Japan's benchmark stock index moved out of bear market territory on Friday following comments by Japan's Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) that shook Tokyo financial markets minutes before the close of trade.
GPIF said that it would raise its weighting of domestic stocks to 12 percent from its current 11 percent and lower its weighting of Japanese government bonds (JGBs) to 60 percent from 67 percent.
The news saw the Nikkei rally as much as 1 percent to briefly cross the 13,000 mark before swinging wildly between gains and losses.
The rest of Asia's equity markets accelerated their pace of losses following the Nikkei's volatility. Australia's S&P ASX 200 index closed at a new four-and-a-half-month low, South Korean shares hit a new six-week low and the Shanghai Composite dropped over 1 percent.
For the week, Asia's worst-performing index was the Nikkei. Its losses exceeded 6 percent while Shanghai equities came in second with losses of 4 percent.
(Read More: Nikkei Swings Give Markets Bad Case of Deja Vu)